The first sign of a change in the lens is that we begin to lose our reading vision, and we have to hold things further and further away. While that’s not a symptom directly of cataracts, it’s a symptom of the lens of the eye beginning to age, and losing its focusing ability. That’s going to happen to all of us, it’s going to happen to me, and it will happen to you.
It is a process called presbyopia, it’s not cataracts, but it’s the first sign of ageing of the lens of the eye. Many people choose to come and see us when they first notice this. We can then discuss cataract surgery with them at this stage.
Even though it’s almost like they have pre-cataract, we very often – if they don’t want to wear reading glasses – will do cataract surgery at that time and use a sophisticated multi-focal lens implant to correct both the distance vision, the intermediate computer and TV vision, and also the reading vision. 95% of those treated will never need glasses again.
Interviewer: So it’s like a two in one or a three in one?
Alex Shortt: Absolutely. Some people call this refractive lens exchange. Other people call it pre-cataract surgery. Effectively it is cataract surgery, as its the exact same operation, but before the full development of cataract.
Now we would never do it on a young person who has an entirely transparent lens and is focussing, that would be crazy. But if you’re starting to see that your reading vision is deteriorating, you are beginning the slippery slope of lens aging. Eventually, that will develop into a full-on cataract.
If you’d like to know more about vision corrective surgery, book a free initial screening today and I will personally answer your questions. Alternatively, take our free suitability quiz to find out which treatment you are suitable for.